Posts Tagged ‘Tilda Swinton’

I Want to Spend a Night in “The Grand Budapest Hotel”

In Movies on October 25, 2014 at 5:50 pm


Last night, I was fortunate enough to go to a free screening of “The Grand Budapest Hotel” and witness a Q&A following the screening with Jeremy Dawson a producer on the film who has worked with Wes Anderson, the director of the aforementioned film, on several other films as well.

For those of you who don’t know what “The Grand Budapest Hotel” is or who the heck Wes Anderson is, let me enlighten you. This movie contains within it three stories. The most important and lavish story, is the one that contains young Zero Mustafah, played by Tony Reveolori, who is the Lobby Boy for the hotel and M. Gustave, played by Ralph Fiennes, who is the concierge for the hotel. These two meet after M. Gustave has an unusual encounter with Madame D., played by Tilda Swinton, who appears to believe that her life is in danger. What befalls after that includes an advernture involving a henchman, played fantastically by Willem DaFoe as Jopling, and includes Dmitrie, Madam D.’s son, played by Adrien Brody and a long cast containing Harvey Keitel as Prisoner inmate Ludwig, Jeff Goldlbum, as Deputy Kovacs, Edward Norton as Police Chief Henckels, Bill Murray as M. Ivan, Owen Wilson as M. Chuck, and Jason Scwatrzman as M. Jean. Without spoiling the entirety of this brilliant picture, this movie is about love, humanity, and courage in the face of danger. But, you may ask, isn’t just about every movie about something like that? Why, yes it is. However, this movie is also immensely funny and I believe one of the best, if he were to die today, I would say the best We Anderson movie out there. Who is Wes Anderson you ask?

Well he’s a director known for his unusual oddly humorous characters, intense color schemes, fantastic set designs, and mixing humor and drama quite effectively. He’s directed such works as “Rushmore”, “The Royal Tenebaums” and my personal favorite, second, of course to “The Grand Budapest Hotel”, “Fantastic Mr. Fox”. Mr. Anderson bits and pieces from his prior films to make something authentic and worth seeing in “The Grand Budapest Hotel”.

The set design for this movie was fantastic and outrageous. The chandeliers, the alley ways, the bakery shop, were all incredibly done and done with such detail. There was also several uses of stop-motion animation throughout the film that were hilarious but still kept the story moving. Revolori and Fiennes were fantastic and I guess what really drew me to enjoying this film was that I liked their relationship. I didn’t care for many of the characters in both “Rushmore” and “The Royal Tenebaums” and maybe I wasn’t supposed to but Zero and M. Gustave I enjoyed. I wanted them to succeed. I am also a sucker for a good adventure and “The Grand Budapest Hotel” was exactly that. From prison breakouts to infiltrating a priest hood, Zero and M. Gustave had an adventure that they surely will not forget.

“The Grand Budapest Hotel” contains the best parts of any Wes Anderson film and it is one that I think people everywhere should watch.

P.S. Also, just something funny to note, the producer revealed to us that Harvey Keitel was so intent upon nailing his prison inmate character, that he spent the night in the East German prison that they filmed it, because, well….he wanted to. There was no heating, no lights, just blankets and warm bodies. Just Harvey Keitel and a few German extras spending the night in an old East German prison. No big deal or anything.



In Movies on December 22, 2012 at 8:09 pm

Powerful, thought-provoking, and dramatic. “We Need to Talk About Kevin” is all of those things and extremely relevant given the recent tragedy. This movie was amazingly shot, wonderfully written and made me a Tilda Swinton fan for life. She is utterly fantastic in this movie as is Ezra Miller as Kevin. Before I even begin to offer the synopsis and subsequent review, let me just say that you should watch this movie.

“We Need to Talk About Kevin”, directed and written by Kynne Ramsay, depicts a high school massacre perpetrated by Kevin Khatchadourin. This movie shows Kevin as a toddler, Rock Duer, and Kevin from the age of 6-8, Jasper Newell, allowing the viewer to witness his development as a child and his strained relationship with his mother Eva Khatchadourian, Tilda Swinton. Eva has difficulty connecting with Kevin and voices her feelings to her husband Franklin, blamed by bumbling John C. Reilly, seriously this guy is in every movie, his agent must be phenomenal, who doesn’t see what she sees and believes that their son is just a little strange. Jumping back and forth from past to present, to the incident, this movie shows the backlash the community feels towards Eva as well as the changes that Kevin experiences while in prison. Wonderfully shot and extremely poignant, this movie is a must see. Now onto the good stuff! *Spoilers*

The color red is shown throughout this film and is a very powerful thematic device within this film. Red can represent love and life, while also representing blood and death and this movie shows both sides of this color, using it within a PB&J as well as the paint that is splattered on Eva’s house. The film is often tinted red as well. I mention this because I think it deserves mentioning and I applaud the director for doing this.

Ezra Miller gave me the chills, possibly causing me to think of him as Kevin from now on. His last part in this movie, was wonderful and gave the audience the idea that he, possibly?, felt remorse. I don’t know what he did for this film, but he played a psychopath to a t, hitting all the marks across the board.

Jasper Newell also deserves mentioning because he creeped me out as well. I have never seen this kid before in any other film but he became young creepy Kevin right in front of me. Jasper has a strong acting career ahead of him, as long as he does not get pigeon-holed as a creepy kid.

Tilda Swinton was fantastic within this movie. I loved her in “Michael Clayton” and in both movies she completely became her character. My heart broke with her when she found Celia and Franklin in the back yard, as well as when Kevin destroyed her room, and I felt her anger when Kevin purposely pooped in his diaper, just to have her change it again. I understood her and I think she conveyed the sense of anger, confusion, loneliness, and love so well within this film.

John C. Reilly deserves an honorable mention because although he did not have that much screen time, he still played the aloof father quite well. He chose to look over every indication that Eva mentioned concerning Kevin’s behavior and continued teaching Kevin archery, while not understanding why Eva didn’t want Celia helping Kevin when he was shooting. He was great in this film and I think an extremely tragic character, second to Celia, who may have either ignored Kevin’s behavior or simply did not see it, and died as a result of it.

The backlash that the community feels towards Eva was well depicted and realistic, while also being something that not many movies show. When a tragedy like this occurs, we often will alienate the family, believing that their relationship with the killer makes them equally as guilty. However, often times they are not.

Watch this movie. It is disturbingly good.